September 16
1850: Confession of coachman
1854: Cholera victims helped
1867: Devil’s helpmates
1869: Confession of dying past-pupil
1871: Gastaldi archbishop of Turin

1850: Confession of coachman

On September 16, 1850, Don Bosco did go to Stresa. It was a ba business trip, to be sure, but he also wanted to take a closer look sto at the Rosminian rules andat the observance of religious discipline
in the principal house of the congregation which was also the novitiate.
Arriving at Santhi shortly before midnight, he heard the confession
of the coachman; then, after passing through Vercelli and Novara, he got off at Arona (on Lake Maggiore). (BM IV, 89)

1854: Cholera victims helped

The help given by the Oratory boys under Don Bosco’s leadership was so praiseworthy as to deserve special mention in the leading Turin newspaper L’Armonia.

“Moreover, Don Bosco persuaded fourteen of his boys to volunteer. their services to the Health Department for work in the medical centres or in private homes. They were sufficiently trained to offer spiritual and material assistance. Inspired by Don Bosco’s ample, whom they regarded more as a father than a superior,Oravely went to the aid of the sick….Besides the fourteen volunteers teers, Don Bosco had a reserve of thirty stand-bys similarly trained who were always ready to join their companions.We have cited the help given by the Oratory of St. Francis de Sales because we feel it is our duty – one we make our own make known its activities to its benefactors.” (BM V, 75)

1867: Devil’s helpmates

During the “Good Night” Don Bosco spoke in an awe-inspiring manner mentioning the names of six boys who were doing the devil’s work at the Oratory, dragging down to hell the souls of their companions.

“These boys believe they are safe, but I know who they are and I could name them in publie!…You (and he name the boy) are a wolf roaming among your companions, weaning them away from their superiors by ridiculing their admonitions… You (and he cited another youngster) are a murderer, for your secret notes and doings snatch your companions from Our Lady’s side….” Six boys were named. His voice was calm and clear. Every name evoked a muffled cry or moan from the culprit, amid the dead silence of the assembly. It seemed like the last judgement!…. The next day some left for home and others transferred to the artisans’ section… (BM VIII, 409-410)

1869: Confession of dying past-pupil

Caesar Bardi, Don Bosco’s former pupil was seriously sick. However, his relatives did not want the saint to visit him lest confession shoul frighten and disturb him. However, Don Bosco insisted and was allow
to meet Caesar.

Once the youth saw Don Bosco, he sat up and, flinging his arms about him, repeatedly kissed him, exclaiming: “Oh, Don thanks for coming. I was waiting for you. I want to make my confession.”
“Please leave the room for a moment,”Don Bosco told the bystanders. It was a most moving scene. After his confession, radiant with joy, the young man insisted on having a picture of Our Lady wall before him and he kept gazing at it lovingly.”(BMX, 11)

1871: Gastaldi archbishop of Turin

On his return from Rome, Don Bosco announced with joy the appointment of Gastaldi as archbishop of Turin. The archbishop-elect himself was at
the Oratory at that time.

The bishop rushed to meet Don Bosco and, grasping his arm, led him up to his room where they were closeted for some. Toward the end of their conversation Don Bosco gave him the Pope’s message. “Now archbishop, in a couple of years somewhat more!”
“Let us leave that to Providence,” Gastaldi responded. That evening Don Bosco told the community that Bishop Gastaldi had been appointed archbishop of Turin and invited all to rejoice because the prelate had always been so well disposed to ward the Oratory and Don Bosco. (BM X, 203)

More than two years later when the question of the new cardinals came up Don Bosco did not dare suggest the name of Gastaldi for the red hat. An entry in Father Berto’s diary read:

“A consistory for the elevation of new cardinals is about to be held,” I remarked. “Will Gastaldi be one of them?”
Far from it,” Don Bosco replied. “When I see him, I’ll tell him, New cardinals have been created but I dared not recommed you
ou keep fightingmy Congregation tooth and nail. Besides, My recommendation would fall on deaf ears’.” (BM X, 239)

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